Monday, June 18, 2012


The Anointed Choir presents a special during a Sunday service.

"Higher, higher! Higher, Jesus, higher!"

"Lower, lower! Lower, Satan, lower!"

The voices ring out and the hands sway. Hands are uplifted to "lift Jesus higher" and then push the air downward to push "Satan lower."

The song leader finishes her part and steps back in time to be replaced by another worshiper who transitions easily into the next song.

"I am a winner in the Lord-oo!" "I am a winner in the Lord-oo!"

There is no need for a sound system in this island church. Traditional drums, clapping hands and worshipers singing with all of their hearts are all the "instruments" that are needed. Sometimes it seems the walls cannot hold the sound and we might push them down, like the walls of Jericho.

There is almost no other place I would rather be on a Sunday morning than in my "home" church here in Uganda. Right now it meets in a long mud building - mud walls, dirt floor, tin roof and school benches for seats.

The future home of Kyoya Deliverance Church
 A brick structure not far away is taking shape. It will someday be the home of the new church as its members patiently raise funds to raise a roof.

But, as you know, the building, is not the "church," it is a body of believers who meet faithfully to worship the Lord, hear from His word and build one another up through prayer and testimonies.

Of all the things I love most about the island church, it is the excitement, especially during times of praise and worship.

You stand during the entire singing time (I'm not sure how anyone could sit for this!), and clap in time with the drums, sing with all of your heart (whether or not you know the words), and jump, dance, sway, wave your hands or whatever the song or mood directs.

The people are excited to worship God. In a place where life can be monotonous, dark, perhaps even depressing, Sunday morning is a time to reconnect with the Creator and their Heavenly Father. He is the One who has kept them alive during the week, healed them from a recent sickness, provided school fees, and supplied yesterday's food.

Testimonies are often very practical. "I thank God for my life and yours." "I thank God that He provided me school fees." "I thank God for healing me from malaria last week."

Nearly the entire service is presented in English and in Luganda, with a translator relaying what the speaker has said. Getting ready for "lunch," means we are preparing to hear the Word. A team of speakers rotate each week in sharing the message. Yes, even I have stood behind the "pulpit" on occasion. :)

My eyes often light up as members present "special songs" during the service The groups, who are mostly students, will sing and/or dance in Luganda or English. The church's "Anointed Choir" is around 20-students strong and is a favorite each Sunday during the school terms.

The 160+ students of Lingira Living Hope swell the church when school is in session. But their liveliness, youthful enthusiasm and diverse talents add a richness to the church that is missed when the students go home for their breaks.

In my opinion you haven't really visited the island, unless you have spent a Sunday morning in Kyoya Deliverance Church.

Let me know when you're coming and I will be sure and save you a seat on the school bench beside me.


  1. Thanks for this glimpse into your Sunday mornings! ;-)

  2. Have loved the pastors and others connected to Deliverance churches in Kpla and Soroti. Enjoy the singing and enthusiasm, too. Heard that song in Jinja in '91 when I was preaching at a church. Sure would love to have you come to Omaha when you come back to visit your family so I could spend a few hours with you again and show you the videos of the talking and music. Oh, well.... know that won't happen, but just thought I'd toss it your way. Maybe I'll be at Niki's when you return... that would be a good excuse for me to hit the road. Anyhow, enjoyed reading and seeing your fun church sharing pieces. So miss it!

  3. It's cool to find your blog, Ruthie! I was so encouraged by the comment you left on my blog earlier today regarding the article on Boundless. Wonderful to see how God is moving all over Uganda...feel free to get in touch when you're headed to Kampala sometime!

  4. Thanks for your faithful comments, Joanne! It is nice to know that someone understands even more what I describe from here. :)
    Janel, it is very cool to connect with you! It would be awesome to meet you sometime. God bless you, your family and your ministry! :)